Did you know that in the United States, nearly 50 percent of trips taken by car are under three miles and 35 percent are under two miles? These are short trips that when taken by bike instead of by car save the hassle of driving, save money, and help save the planet.
Last year, the League of American Bicyclists challenged Americans to begin making a change – to take 1 million transportation trips by bike. The Drive Less, Bike More campaign encouraged participants to ride to the store, to school, to work, or simply to replace a trip that would previously have been made by car.
Bike friends across the country joined together and surpassed the goal, riding over 1.5 million miles for transportation! That’s why this year, the bar has been raised. In 2022, the League of American Bicyclists and Love to Ride are challenging the USA to ride 2 million miles for transportation!
Tracking progress, the Modeshift O’Meter
When a rider logs a trip for transportation, those miles automatically contribute to the Modeshift O’Meter – our goal tracker. Placed on our homepage for all to see, this tracker reminds our riders of their impact and triggers action that will inspire greater behaviour change.
What is the impact of the 2 million mile challenge?
When we switch cars for handlebars, a substantial amount of CO2 is prevented from entering the atmosphere. In addition, the physical and mental health of participants improves, and local communities become cleaner, greener, more bike-friendly places to be.
A key metric that we track on Love to Ride is the amount of carbon saved. In 2021, by riding 1.5 million miles for transportation, Americans saved 963,740lbs CO2 and this year we hope to save 1,284,986lbs CO2.
To give an idea of this carbon saving, a typical fully-grown tree can absorb around 46lb of carbon dioxide per year. This means that, in the few months it takes us to achieve our goal, we will save almost 28,000 trees a whole year’s-worth of work.
From car to bike, what do we know?
When riders join Love to Ride, they complete a baseline survey. At this point, we collect information on motivators, barriers and current riding frequency. We also ask riders how they usually travel to work which allows us to estimate a baseline level of car trips.
In 2021, our results showed that:
In July 2022 alone, as part of the Drive Less, Bike More campaign, over 10,000 transportation bike trips were recorded by users who previously made those trips by car. These trips totaled almost 60,000 miles and saved over 37,479 CO2.
We can’t wait to see and share the results from this year’s Drive Less, Bike More campaign, in association with the League of American Bicyclists. Get involved and make your miles count by logging your transportation bike rides on lovetoride.net